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'SYTYCD' Nappytabs opening number: Best ever?

sytycd opening number june 25 2013

That is certainly a bold claim, but the opening number from Tuesday’s Top 20 performance show (full recap here) was such a treat. I still can’t type the moniker “Nappytabs” (or walk by Tabitha and Napoleon’s urban dancewear store in North Hollywood) without feeling weird about it, but anyway, the duo choreographed a superbly shot (in seemingly one take! …but not) behind-the-scenes routine, set to the perfect snazzy song — “Puttin’ on the Ritz” by Herb Alpert feat. Lani Hall. The judges, SYTYCD All-Stars, and some choreographers make cameos.

It has a very Xanadu/”All Over the World”-esque vibe, which I know is like the opposite of a ringing endorsement, for sane people. But I promise, it’s so good: READ FULL STORY

Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD' finale: Chehon and Eliana -- The big winners!

In the first time in SYTYCD history, two ballet dancers take top honors!

In the closest race ever to be America’s favorite dancers, we were in such suspense to find out the answer. I had no idea how America was going to vote, especially since Tiffany and Cyrus were never in danger the entire season. So it took me by surprise who came out on top.

I stayed in my dressing room the night before. That’s right – I whipped out my blow-up bed and reflected on the whole season and which dances were highlights for me! I tried to keep it to two dances per show. We started this season with eight contemporary, three ballroom, three ballet, two jazz, one stepper, one belly dancer, one popper, and one martial arts fusion dancer.


Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': Season performance finale sizzles and pops!

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season! Catch up with her and her thoughts on the most recent episodes of So You Think You Can Dance.

I’m in such awe when these dancers go outside their style most weeks, but last night they had to do five dance numbers that put them out on the edge.  I heard there were quite a lot of tears backstage before the show started, as last night was the show that determined who was going to be America’s favorite dancers – so the pressure was on!


Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': America has voted and four stars are left standing!

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season! Catch up with her and her thoughts on the most recent episodes of So You Think You Can Dance.

What an exciting night of dance! Tension ran high on the judging panel and in the audience as to who would make our finale. The pressure is off the judges because America voted for the top six tonight, and for who would be in the finale. We had absolutely no say, so I found it odd today that my Twitter was so abuzz with comments about how “we” could possibly let a certain dancer leave the show! Dancers in the finale are the dancers that America wanted. Whether they’re the best or not, it’s about them being America’s favorite dancers. So when I’m asked by reporters “Did America get it right?” — of course they did because it’s about America’s favorites!

Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': Guest judge Jesse Tyler Ferguson rocks the panel

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season! Catch up with her and her thoughts on the most recent episodes of So You Think You Can Dance.

My favorite guest judge kept me in stitches all night but make no mistake he’s truly in love with all the dancers and the show. Starting the show off with a bang was a hip-hop number choreographed by Luther Brown. Luther was a judge and choreographer on the Canadian version of SYTYCD and currently works with Nikki Minaj. It was great to have Luther on the show because I miss my Canadian family and sitting next to Luther on the panel.

Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': The all-stars are back and energy levels are high!

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season! Catch up with her and her thoughts on the most recent episodes of So You Think You Can Dance.

The show started off with a bang with a fabulous disco from Doriana Sanchez starring Tiffany and all-star Brandon Bryant. Yes they get big points for such a difficult routine and how about that leap-split into his arms? I love that move! Tiffany was full of fire tonight. Other highlights – and there were many – were Whitney and all-star Nick Lazzarini in a Travis Wall piece that sent the thermometer off the charts, in the “hot” direction. The choreographer required Whitney to bring her sexy and she was certainly smoldering tonight.

OK, Cole, please don’t put pressure on me to put you on the Hot Tamale Train! But you have to know your paso doble should’ve been on that train, I just got so carried away on how fabulous you were and we were short on time. And for the record for a non-professional ballroom dancer, that has been the best paso in the show’s history! So you’re already on that train and have been from week 1. And P.S. – the cha-cha was not bad; I just had high expectations after your paso.

Welcomed onto the Hot Tamale Train for the first time were Lindsay and Jacob Karr in a Spencer List Broadway piece. If anybody looked like they were ready for the Broadway stage it was Lindsay in a very stylistic number.

I can’t wait to find out what Cyrus draws each week and how he copes with it. Well I was pleasantly surprised and in total awe of him in Travis Wall’s contemporary piece with all-star Jamie Goodwin. How does someone give this kind of performance with this kind choreography with no training? My favorite number of the night was another fabulous number from Stacey Tookey and Eliana and all-star Alex Wong. It was a personal sigh of relief to see Alex finally healthy and dancing again on our stage. Eliana definitely had her day in the sun. Her command of the stage, her gorgeous technique, her ability to give an honest performance and her amazing control of movement set her apart tonight. I can’t wait to see what she’ll be up against next week. How does a quick step sound?

And we said goodbye to two brilliant dancers last night: George Lawrence II and Audrey Case. Luckily we will see them soon in the finale and on the tour.

Now for something more trivial. There has been a huge response to my butterfly ring by Zorab that I wore. I’m working hard to wear similar jewelry but at a fraction of the cost since that ring is $20,000! Oh, and the purple dress I wore was by Teri Jon.

Stepping off for now,


NEXT: Mary blogs SYTYCD‘s special Mia Michaels episode

Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': Second week of eliminations

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season of So You Think You Can Dance.

This show was over before I knew it.  It was a great night of dancing with some with some hills and valleys, with some of the top dancers struggling in ballroom..  With so many ballroom dances used on the show, I’ll never know why contestants don’t run to the ballroom schools!

Among the couples that struggled were Janelle and Dareian, starring in their first cha-cha.  It was a tough routine by Pasha, and they executed the choreography but had a tough time latching on to the technique.  In the same boat, Audrey and Matthew danced their first salsa.  I think both of those guys had some brilliant moments, with Audrey looking very good in her action.  Matthew looked more relaxed as he went along.  PLEASE shoot the person who put Matthew in red pants and black shoes – NOT GOOD!

The highlight of the night was Whitney and Chehon, and yes, I mean Whitney!  I know they’re like sisters and certainly I got caught up in the moment of that beautiful routine by Stacey Tookey (to whom Nigel gave high marks and said she was “Oscar-nominated!”).  Sorry Whitney.  To think this couple almost went home last week…what a defining moment for them on the show.

Probably the most perplexing moment for me was, when on the night I felt Brandon and Amber had their best night starring in a Ray Leeper jazz piece, they were sent home.  With input from all the choreographers and judges, it was a tough decision to make.

Don’t forget, National Dance Day is this Saturday, so do a little dance for us!

Oh, and my dress is Lanvin and of course that beautiful butterfly ring was by Zorab!

Stepping off for now…


Read more:
Mary Murphy on ‘SYTYCD': The first cut of the season
Mary Murphy on ‘SYTYCD': Catching up on this season

Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': The first cut of the season

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season of So You Think You Can Dance!

The first cut is always the hardest, but as you know we have to whittle our way down to only two champions this season. It would be great if everyone could stay, but even though we are enjoying great artists, this is a competition. I found it interesting who did not receive enough votes to stay out of danger, but let’s talk about some of the numbers first.

Sonya was the talk of the show and was right on point. Her first number starring Will and Amelia was mesmerizing. With the weight of the world on their shoulders, I felt their struggle and internal turmoil throughout the entire piece. Of course, it was all in their own style and it was exquisite. Sonya’s other piece starred Matthew and Audrey. For two of the smaller contestants, they pack a serious punch! Nobody can say they don’t use their bodies to the fullest extent – they are certainly a dream team.


Mary Murphy on 'SYTYCD': Catching up on this season

Mary Murphy is blogging for EW.com this season! Catch up with her and her thoughts on the past few episodes of So You Think You Can Dance.


Hello everybody and yes we’re back and better than ever!  Each year I have no idea what will be ahead.  Will this season’s dancers possibly be as good as last season’s?  I believe they are.  I’m always filled with so much excitement as my car picks me for the first audition city and the auditions this year did not let me down.

Highlights on the road were for sure Dragonhouse in Atlanta, where a crew of four boys broke it down for me and Nigel.  We felt like we saw hip hop move to another level that day and couldn’t wait to see how they would cope in Las Vegas.   Of course who could forget the Dance Exorcist from Dallas?  What I was happy to hear was that I was not the only one so affected by this young man.  Even the cameramen were crying after this one.  One thing is for sure: anyone who was in that audience that day saw magic happen before their very eyes.  And one of the most touching moments for me was the Utah mother who put her dance career on hold to have her children.  When she danced, it hit me how much she gave up because she was truly an amazing dancer.  But anyone that has children knows all too well that it becomes the most important thing in their life.  After she danced so beautifully, her 2-and-a-half-year old gave her the tickets to Vegas.  The little girl then said “My turn, mommy!”  I was so touched by that scene I couldn’t stop crying even after I went on break.  I think I always played out that scene in my mind because I always wanted a child; it just didn’t work out that way for me.


Debbie Allen vs. J. Lo: Who wore an 'I wholeheartedly approve of you' stankface better?

It’s our first-ever Reality TV GIF Battle! I’m pretty psyched.

On tonight’s So You Think You Can Dance auditions in Atlanta, guest judge Debbie Allen rivaled American Idol judge Jennifer Lopez in terms of wearing an “I wholeheartedly approve of what is happening onstage” stankface complete with dramatic head-jerks and an overwhelming sense of “bringing it.”

So who wore it better? Vote for your favorite dancing diva below…. READ FULL STORY

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